The so-called "Fappening 2.0" looks set to continue as a number of new celebrities are rumoured to be impacted by the release of explicit photos and videos, with British television presenter Holly Willoughby and US actor Rose McGowan among the latest alleged victims.
36-year-old Willoughby, a well-known face on UK screens for her work on shows including This Morning and Celebrity Juice, is currently being "taunted" by hackers who successfully hijacked "X-rated" photographs of her, The Sun reported on Sunday (19 March).
The British tabloid said the television host and model was included on an "online list" of victims alongside other celebrities including reality stars Millie Mackintosh and Kylie Jenner.
It said hackers are now using "invite-only" forums to share and trade the images online.
The Willoughby photo leak is yet to be independently verified. Additionally, a source has denied that such images are in circulation.
"Holly is unconcerned as these are baseless accusations as far as she is concerned" the contact, described as "close to Holly", stated.
Last week, it emerged a slew of famous stars – all female – had been victimised by the publication of nude images and sex tapes. A-list names included Emma Watson, Amanda Seyfried, Mischa Barton and British wrestling star Saraya-Jade Bevis, also known as Paige.
All now appear to be taking legal action against a website blamed for circulating the explicit content without consent. IBTimes UK is not reporting the name of the site due to privacy concerns.
In a letter to the outlet, Amanda Seyfried's legal team demanded a number of images be taken down. It said they included "several very private photographs of Ms Seyfried either in various states of nudity or in intimate moments with her former boyfriend."
Representatives for Emma Watson, star of new Disney film Beauty and the Beast, denied reports images showed the actor nude. Her publicist told the BBC the pictures were from a clothes fitting. "Lawyers have been instructed and we are not commenting further," a statement read.
It has also emerged that Rose McGowan, star of TV's "Charmed", has enlisted the aid of the US Department of Justice (DoJ) after a private sex tape was published online late last week without permission. Her legal team told one gossip website the images were "obtained illegally".
On 19 March, McGowan tweeted a warning to her 651,000 followers: "Hey little hacker boys, Mama is coming and she hits hard."
The full scope of the latest round of celebrity leaks remains unclear. The incident comes following the 2014 "Fappening" incident – also branded "Celebgate" – which saw Jennifer Lawrence, Kelly Brook and Kate Upton among 100-plus public figures impacted by explicit disclosures.
The initial leak was blamed on weak security on Apple iCloud accounts, which are often used to store images and documents. In October last year, a 36-year-old hacker named Ryan Collins, was jailed for 18 months for breaking into dozens of stars' Google and Apple profiles.
What is the Fappening? The nude photo scandal that shook the celebrity world
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